15 Painting Tips from the Pros
Painting may look easy to some but in reality, it takes skills and experience to create a professional looking finish. It's not just simply slapping some paint on the wall or the ceiling. There are necessary preparations that you need to do before you can actually start the painting work.
Painting a room in your place is more than choosing your favorite color and using it on the interior of your home. There are recommended colors to choose from in order to create a certain theme and feeling inside and outside of your home.
If you're on a budget or just want to take everything into your hands, here are some interior painting tips that will help you have a great finish that you can be proud of. We've also included do-it-yourself tricks to help you have a smoother and faster painting project, including a bonus tip on how to easily clean up the mess after you're done painting.
1. Inspect and clean the surface thoroughly
This is one of the most neglected processes of newbies when starting a paint project. But it's the most important step in ensuring that you get a quality and well-polished paint job.
If you paint on a dirty surface, the new coat will only pull the old paint and will result in peeling. Moreover, the paint will not easily bond with the dirty wall or ceiling. You'd just end up wasting your money and time, so make sure you clean the area before working on it.
Check the surface for any cracks, flaking and peeling. Then, thoroughly sand or scrape it before rinsing the surface. Use heavy duty cleaner and washers to remove stains, dust, and hard edges. And use putty or epoxy where holes or cracks are visible on the surface.
Furthermore, it's important to wash greasy spots with soap and thoroughly rinsing with water. Professional and commercial painters know that there's nothing more difficult than working on a greasy surface.
2. Go for high-quality supplies and resources
If you're trying to save on a paint job, steer clear of cheap paint and brushes. If you skimp too much, you'll end up spending more because a paint job from substandard coat doesn't provide the best coverage. In short, it won't last for a long time, and you might need to repaint again after just a year.
So, if you really want to save, go for the best supplies and resources. Aside from a long-lasting effect, it will also make your work quicker, easier and more professional looking.
3. Cover furniture and flooring
When painting an interior, one of the problems you'll encounter is moving furniture. Small furniture can be moved out of the room quite easily. Big furniture, however, is a little harder, so your best bet is to cover them.
You don't want to ruin your furniture — or your floor — with paint drips and splatters, and dust from sanding, so it's better to cover them up before you start painting.
4. Use tinted paint
Instead of a standard white primer, choose a tinted primer. It does a better job in covering the existing or old paint color as compared to the plain white primer.
The finish coat will also be more vibrant, resulting in fewer coats. Using tinted primer is best with existing colors like red or orange, which usually require three or more coats without a primer.
5. Use painter's tape with a putty knife
To avoid excess paint on the edge of the wall or ceiling, you need to cover the edges with tape. Instead of using masking tape, use blue painter's tape that won't leave a sticky residue. You can even leave it up for a few days and will still remove easily.
Moreover, to have a good seal and ensure that no paint will bleed through, use a putty knife over the top to press the tape.
6. Use paint extender
One of the secrets to a polished and professional looking paint job is mixing your coat with a paint extender. With a paint extender, also called a paint conditioner, you can avoid lap and brush marks.
Using a paint extender has even more benefits, too. One, it slows down paint drying time, which is a good opportunity for you to fix any mistakes — something you can't do when the paint has dried up. Second, it doesn't leave brush marks, either.
7. Go for canvas drop cloths
Thin bed sheets will not prevent paint splatters and spills from bleeding through to your floors. Plastic is also no good. It doesn't dry easily and can get on your shoes, leaving footprints all over your house.
To avoid spills and platters, use canvas drop cloths instead. Unlike plastic, they're not slippery. They also easily absorb splatters, so you don't have to worry if paint will go to your floor.
8. Finish one wall before moving to the next
Don't rush when painting walls. Make sure to finish working on one wall completely before moving on to the next. This way, you'll have a seamless look on the wall.
Also, when switching from one wall to another, it is best to cover your paint bucket with a damp towel to keep it from drying up.
9. Don't tape windows
Professional suggest not taping the windows since the paint will still bleed through. It's best to let it be, and once the paint dries, simply scrape the paint off the glass window with a blade.
10. Use box paint when mixing color
This may surprise you, but the same paint colors can vary between cans. To ensure you have a consistent color from start to finish, mix cans of paint in a five-gallon bucket. Popularly called boxing, this process is commonly done by most professional painters in the industry.
11. Wash rollers
Whether you're using an expensive or cheap paint roller, you must wash them before using them. This will help remove fuzz and fibers that can stick to walls while you're painting.
Place them under running water with a little bit of liquid soap. Move your hands up and down the rollers to remove fibers. Professionals call this process preconditioning the covers. The best part is you don't have to wait for them to dry, you can use them immediately.
12. Remove switch plates
You can always tape the edges of switch plates before painting to ensure that no paint will get on them, but it can be a lot of work and paint can still bleed through it.
The easiest thing to do is to take off those switch plates so you can get the paint under where the plate will lie, providing a perfect paint job.
13. Use work light
If you want to achieve consistent color your walls, make sure you have sufficient lighting, maybe even using a work light as you go along. Pay close attention to the edges where you use a brush instead of a roller. There might be more inconsistencies in these areas.
14. Paint from top to bottom
To avoid drips and spatters, professionals suggest painting from top to bottom.This will result in a more consistent paint job and it's just more convenient and easier to do.
15. Wrap your rollers
Lastly, when you are done painting, make sure to wrap your roller and brushes into an airtight plastic bag or very snugly in tin foil. If you have to continue painting the next day, you don't have to worry about your roller being dried up.
These are just some professional tips and tricks to remember when painting all sorts of surfaces. Following these techniques can help you achieve a well-polished and professional looking walls in no time.